Refugee Resettlement Watch

Archive for January 22nd, 2010

Comment worth noting: refugee agencies to get more federal funding

Posted by Ann Corcoran on January 22, 2010

Update January 24th:  Would freeze on discretionary spending affect the money flow to this plan?

In the first week of January we posted on one more of those stories about refugees not making it in the present rotten economy—the story was from Kansas City.  In the news article we posted there was this intriguing line:

Last summer, the National Security Council appointed an interagency task force to come up with recommendations, due in February, on how to revamp the resettlement system.

I was optimistic that maybe, just maybe, some real reform would come out of this.  Maybe it still will, but we have just learned from commenter Iamevolved that the R & P money that the US State Department gives to resettlement agencies to take care of refugees in the first 30 days will be doubled!   Here is Iamevolved commenting at the Houston post, a post that incidentally created a lot of discussion.

Effective 1/1/2010 the per capita funding for the refugee resettlement program was raised from $900 to $1,800.

So, what does that mean?   Up until now, refugee resettlement agencies got $900 per head for each refugee they resettle and they split it roughly in half with the refugee.  The agency could keep its half for its office overhead and staff funding.  Now, the Obama Administration is going to magically double it (don’t they need Congressional action, or is this from Obama’s private “stash?”)   So, what else is new!  I thought that maybe since the National Security Council was involved there might be some other issues addressed.  I sure hope it isn’t just one more Obama bailout —of the refugee contractors this time.

Nesting services!   For new readers here is a little information at an older annual report on exactly what R & P means.

Most of the persons eligible for ORR’s refugee program benefits and services are refugees resettled through the Department of State’s refugee allocation system under the annual ceiling for refugee admissions. Upon arrival, refugees are provided initial services through a program of grants, called reception and placement cooperative agreements, made by the Department of State to qualifying agencies  [‘qualifying agencies’ are the The Top Ten federal contractors here].

These grantee agencies are responsible for providing initial “nesting” services covering basic food, clothing, shelter, orientation, and referral for the first 30 days.

So what happens after 30 days?  More importantly what happens after eight months and the refugee still has no job?

If we learn more we will keep you posted.  Don’t hold your breath though that they might slow the flow of refugees during this recession.

Posted in Comments worth noting/guest posts, Obama, Refugee Resettlement Program | 14 Comments »

As economy plummets further and unemployment rises, Obama administration continues to import poverty

Posted by Ann Corcoran on January 22, 2010

Since we have so many new readers of late, I’m going to direct you to a post I wrote last September about the Obama Administration aiming to resettle this year (!) the highest number of refugees in the US since 9/11, here

There is no sign of a slow-down in poverty importation and that’s why we are having one story after another of refugees suffering, some wanting to go home, in Bowling Green, KY, Greensboro, NC, Sacramento, CA, Pittsburgh, PA and Houston, TX to name just a few resettlement cities with problems.

Could this be the Cloward-Piven strategy at work?  Except for a complete and utter disregard for the wishes of most American citizens (which seems to be a hallmark of this Administration), this is the only thing that makes any sense  for why we shouldn’t have a moratorium (or at least a reduction in numbers) on resettlement until we get our economic house in order.

Posted in Community destabilization, Obama, Refugee Resettlement Program | 2 Comments »

Heartwarming story for the day: refugees given little farm plots in Massachusetts

Posted by Judy K. Warner on January 22, 2010

This is a nice story, from the Worcester, MA, Telegram. For once there doesn’t seem to be a hidden dark side. (If there is, someone from the area can let us know.)

 In her native Democratic Republic of the Congo, Christine Kindeke and her family always grew their own food.

“In the Congo, most of the income of a family comes from farming,” she said. The knowledge of how to farm, when to plant a particular crop and what methods work best from year to year is passed down from parent to child.

But when she arrived in the United States as a refugee several years ago, that connection to the earth was broken. Living first in New Hampshire and later in Worcester, she had no way to plant the seeds that she had brought with her from Congo. The seeds are from a spinach-like vegetable called biteku-teku in Kikongo, her native tongue.

Last year, she planted those seeds in a small community garden in front of Goddard School of Science and Technology, and harvested a good crop. This year, she has bigger plans.

In a project that seems to be privately funded, a farmer is leasing four acres to Lutheran Social Services.

Quarter-acre plots will go to individual refugees who have shown success in community gardens, while half-acre lots will go to groups of refugees from particular countries, such as Bhutan, Myanmar (Burma), Iraq, Burundi and Democratic Republic of the Congo.

A group called the Massachusetts Society for Promoting Agriculture is funding this with a $10,000 grant. I looked it up to make sure it’s not government-funded, and found an interesting story. Its home page says this:

The M.S.P.A. was founded by concerned citizens, one of whom was Samuel Adams.

In the years following the Revolutionary War, the Commonwealth was struggling with the suspension of profitable industries, destruction of property and heavy taxation. It became evident to the founders that the only present and available wealth lay in agriculture, the primary source of all wealth.

They sought to promote the study and improvement of agriculture by giving “handsome premiums to the men of enterprise who have by their inquiries made useful discoveries and communicated them to the public.” (Petition for Incorporation, March 1792).

So far, I like this project and this organization. Here’s another grant they gave:

A grant allowed a group of entry-level immigrant farmers to buy equipment to insure their success in their fields and at farmer’s markets thus providing a steady income and role-modeling for upwards of forty families.

That’s local involvement at its best.

Posted in Other refugees, Refugee Resettlement Program | 1 Comment »

St. Cloud, MN Somalis turn up the stealth jihad heat, demand “human rights”

Posted by Ann Corcoran on January 22, 2010

Update January 28th:  Diana West has an update, CAIR is now involved here.

Update January 24th:  Man who posted cartoons cited for violating city ordinance, here.

Here is a story yesterday from the St. Cloud Times about Somali students demonstrating this past Wednesday at St. Cloud State University to protest cartoons of Mohammad that appeared around campus.

The recent posting of offensive anti-Islamic cartoons in St. Cloud was part of a pattern of hatred toward people of color in this area, some said Wednesday at a rally at St. Cloud State University.

The university’s Somali Student Association sponsored the rally, which drew comment from city and university leaders, students and one gubernatorial candidate.

The session was a response to last month’s cartoon incident, in which sexually explicit drawings of the Prophet Muhammad and a swastika were posted around St. Cloud, including near a mosque and a Somali-owned store.

St. Cloud State President Earl H. Potter III professed empathy for those hurt by the cartoons, while two professors took aim at what they called systemic racism in the St. Cloud area.

A professor throws in a gratuitous attack at Rep. Michele Bachmann (St. Cloud is the heart of her district), the conservative firebrand and outspoken critic of the Obama Administration, with a veiled suggestion that somehow she is the ringleader of the “racists.”  These leftists’ reliance on the race card is getting old and most of us see through that despicable strategy.

Luke Tripp, a professor of community studies, said the same “conservative white” mind-set led to the election of U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Stillwater.

Tripp cited a history of racially motivated high school fights as evidence of the animosity that Somalis encounter here.

There has been a series of hateful attacks against the growing Somali community since they began arriving here,” Tripp said.

I don’t know if St. Cloud has an American black population, but I assure you that American blacks and African blacks, especially Somalis, as we have reported repeatedly (here in Rochester, MN) on these pages are in conflict across the country (not just in Michele Bachmann’s district!).  It has little to do with skin color and more to do with a culture clash in places where thousands and thousands of Somalis have been settled by the US State Department and its supposedly non-profit government contractors into American cities with the naive expectation that the American melting pot will work its magic.

Let’s just look at the numbers for Minnesota!   Go here and follow the links back to the databases at the Office of Refugee Resettlement (US Health and Human Services).  From 1983 to 2005 Minnesota received 10,695 Somalis out of a total refugee load ot 59,878.  In several years since 2005, Minnesota received thousands more Somalis.  If you add up all the numbers you will find that Minnesota got the largest number of Somalis of any state in the US.  Don’t ask me how that happened, but family reunification is a likely reason.

Once an original refugee population is established each of those families can apply for extended family members to come from, in this case, Africa.  That was until 2008 when the US State Department did some random testing and learned that upwards of 80% of those applications from mostly Somalis for family reunification were fraudulent.  See our most recent coverage of that scandal, here.

The St.Cloud meatpacker connection.  I have been contending all along that the US State Department and the resettlement contractors have been working hand-in-glove with the large US meatpackers to supply cheap refugee labor.  Does Gold’n Plump Poultry ring a bell?

This is from a history of that meatpacking plant in St. Cloud:

In 1996 a raid by the Immigration and Naturalization Service took place at the Cold Spring facility. Workers with forged papers were arrested and deported. Gold’n Plump established new hiring procedures in the wake of the event. The labor market was tight for processors in the industry and many new immigrants comprised much of the company’s labor force. In 1983 a survey showed that 18 percent of the Cold Spring workers were of Asian descent. Throughout the 1990s the ethnic makeup of company workers was mostly Hispanic. The late 1990s and into 2000 saw an influx of Somali refugees in Minnesota, and their numbers were increasing at the plant.

This is a similar story to ones in other cities with meatpacking plants.   Perhaps the clearest example of this strategy was the Clinton Administration’s opening the door to Bosnians to work in Iowa meatpacking plants after his Bosnian war.  Plants (like Gold n’ Plump) had been using illegal aliens then they realized with Clinton’s help that legal refugee labor was just the ticket, here

I would be here all morning if I linked all the posts we have written on meatpackers and their use of refugee labor, suffice it to say it has brought much controversy in places like Shelbyville, TN, Greeley, CO, Ft. Morgan, CO, Emporia, KS and Grand Island, NE, just to name a few with Somali worker conflicts.

Gold n’ Plump in St. Cloud, sued by Somali Muslims and the meatpacker lost.  So you can bet that tensions are already high in St. Cloud when Somalis demanding special prayer accommodations won a lawsuit against the meatpacker.   We reported the story here and here, Jihad Watch has it here, and the EEOC official version of the judgement is here.

What about that dog story?  When I saw this St. Cloud article yesterday I wondered where besides the Gold n’ Plump settlement had I heard of St. Cloud before?  Then I remembered!  In May 2008 a handicapped student with a dog was taunted by Somali students at a technical school and he left the school fearing someone would hurt his dog.  Islamists consider dogs one of ten dirty things in the ‘religion’ right along with feces, urine and dead bodies, thus I guess they felt they could legitimately harrass a dog.   Judy concluded her post on that story with this line:

Yes, we have to respect the Somalis’ right to taunt a dog. Why don’t they just tell the Muslim students that in America we do not tolerate mistreatment of dogs or of dog owners? Oh, that wouldn’t be sensitive.

So back to the St. Cloud protests this week.  We want human rights (yes, theirs are more important than those of the service dog owner, or other workers at Gold n’ Plump) and a human rights office too (paid for by taxpayers of course).

Several speakers also criticized the lack of a fully funded city human rights office.

[…..]

Mohamed Mohamed, president of the Somali Student Association, said he’s encountered discrimination in St. Cloud. But Mohamed added that Wednesday’s rally shouldn’t be about pitting one race of people against another.

“This issue is not white and black,” Mohamed said. “It’s human rights.”

Readers, this is the stealth jihad—we change to accommodate them.  Learn more by visiting this post from 2008 where a commenter tells us how it is being accomplished first in Minnesota.

Update:  Jerry Gordon posts on our post and adds some additional information, here, at New English Review.

Posted in Africa, Changing the way we live, diversity's dark side, Muslim refugees, Refugee Resettlement Program, Stealth Jihad | 4 Comments »

A tremendous victory for free speech for citizens

Posted by Judy K. Warner on January 22, 2010

Yesterday’s Supreme Court decision doesn’t directly relate to refugees, but Ann and I have long been concerned with free speech, including threats to speech because of political correctness.  As bloggers we are always aware that there are those who would like to control the Internet in the interest of ideology.  The high court yesterday upheld, in Citizens United v. FEC, “the right to engage in free speech, particularly political speech, and the right to freely associate” by overturning major provisions of the McCain Feingold campaign finance reform law which restricted political advertising by corporations, among other things.

Almost all the commentary I’ve seen has been about how big money will now control elections — that is, corporations and the rich. Very few seem to understand the larger meaning of the decision. The suit was brought by Citizens United, not by Exxon or Wal-Mart. It was about the group’s right to show a film critical of Hillary Clinton during the campaign season. Citizens United is a corporation, as are most such organizations.

The worst thing about McCain Feingold was that it prevented ordinary people from banding together to influence elections by advertising. What could be more in line with the First Amendment than that? It is political speech, which was originally the very focus of freedom of speech as named in the Bill of Rights. Banning that kind of speech gave us the absurd situation in which nude dancing was held by the Supreme Court to be legitimate expression under the First Amendment, but pointing out a candidate’s good or bad points in an ad was not.

The only commentary I have seen so far which emphasizes this point is an excellent post by Hans von Spakovsky on the Heritage Foundation’s blog, The Foundry, from which I took the words in boldface above. Here’s a bit of it:

Almost every one of the many associations we have in this country (no matter which side of the political aisle they are on), from the NAACP to the Sierra Club to the National Rifle Association, are also corporations. Yet those corporate associations were prohibited under penalty of criminal and civil sanctions from expressing the views of their members in the political arena over which particular candidates should be elected to uphold the positions on important issues of public policy that their members believe in unless they complied with certain very restrictive, complex provisions.

For-profit corporations and labor unions were also prohibited from engaging in independent political activity even though their businesses and the jobs of their employees and members can be greatly affected, damaged, or even lost because of the actions taken by elected members of Congress. There is no rational reason why they should not be able to engage in independent political activity.

Von Spakovsky grounds the decision in basic principles:

It is no surprise that these rights are in the very first amendment in the Bill of Rights of the U.S. Constitution. The Founders, who had fought a long, hard war with the English crown to establish our independence, knew that the ability to associate freely (think the Sons of Liberty) and to engage in political speech without being censored by the government were fundamental rights crucial to our republic. That is why the Supreme Court’s decision throwing out a federal ban on independent political expenditures by corporations (including non-profits) is a return to, as the Court said, “ancient First Amendment principles.”

Read the whole thing; it’s short and better than any other commentary I’ve read so far.

I believe that there will be ramifications of this decision far beyond what any commentary has touched on. Not being psychic or a legal wizard I don’t know what they are, but they might include an end to the IRS persecution of churches and other nonprofits for talking about elections, perhaps an end to the ban on lobbying by certain nonprofits, and many other things, as Americans exercise their traditional practice of exploring the meaning of their rights.

Posted in blogging, free speech | Comments Off on A tremendous victory for free speech for citizens

 
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